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Sequencing pollen DNA to discover insect migratory routes

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Metabarcoding, a technique of mass DNA sequencing, allows for tracing migratory routes of insects, an understudied subject due to technical limitations. A small DNA fragment of the pollen that insects transport is used as a barcode to identify the plant species they visited previously. This British Ecological Society funded study shows that transcontinental pollination mediated by migrating insects is possible and, therefore, various plants located very far apart can mix.

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